travel

My Series of Unfortunate Events at Merbabu Mountain with JanSport Indonesia

The title kinda gives you the impression of a very unfortunate feeling, doesn’t it? Well but that’s what exactly happened and I am going to share it with you which I hope it won’t happen to you in your upcoming trip to Merbabu Mountain!

First of all, I really apologize for the long hiatus. I know it had been a month, I had not posted any blogpost since things were extremely hectic from college, works, and so on. My typical reason, isn’t it? But I am serious!

However, enough with the starter and let’s get started with my very first unfortunate event in my very first experience hiking to Merbabu Mountain in Mid Java, Indonesia. Before starting, here’s the route to Merbabu Mt. from Jakarta.

We took train with 8 hours trip from Gambir Station to Jogjakarta Station. Why didn’t you take plane with 1 hour trip? Perhaps the universe had another plan for us! Here’s how it happened and welcome to the trip of my unfortunate events,

Unfortunate Event 1: We Missed Our Flight

That picture above truly portrayed our just-smile-and-screw-it moment after we had missed the flight to Jogjakarta because we basically had a very strong bond in our friendship. If one of us is late, we should wait for them. Just wait and better be late then risk to miss the flight than we have to separate! Basically that way perhaps. Especially if we set aside about the madness of Jakarta’s traffic that Friday afternoon as a more rational and actual reason we missed the flight.

Lesson Learned
If your friend is late and stuck in the traffic, better leave them instead because you would only pay one extra ticket to catch the other departure.

Unfortunate Event 2: I Made a Wrong Reservation

We decided to take train which took 8 hours trip and missed the 1 hour trip of flight instead. Not to forget, I reserved the online train tickets with wrong date which was supposed to be that night on Friday but Saturday instead since our hiking would actually start at 6 AM in the morning. We rushed to the train station and luckily, it could still be rescheduled to that Saturday night though we got charged because of it. We left at 9 PM and arrived in Jogjakarta Station at 5 AM.

Lesson Learned
Stay sane! Don’t be panicked, and make sure to re-check before making online payment, so you would not make a bank account gets bankrupt because of this recklessness.

Unfortunate Event 3: I Ruined My Turban and Lost My Breath

Well my turban still kinda looked nice there. We, the train gang, made to the budget hotel for travelers, Setia Backpacker, which we had already booked nearby the train station. It only costed around 300 IDR per night. Luckily the range was still in walking distance so we did not have to go by car. At 5 AM, we were so happy to finally meet the other friends who already had comfortable sleep and rest.

This picture really showed that I got my two hands full here. I brought my winter clothings and precisely sleeping bag in my Shotwell Bag from JanSport since I knew it would be completely freezing up there. Loving this Shotwell? Better click this link and add my unique code “JSCHIA10” for 10% off.

We left to Boyolali Village using shuttle as a part of the package we had reserved from MDPL Jogja. It costed around 1M IDR per person included round trip accommodation from Jogja to Merbabu basecamp, mattress, tent, 1 porter/tour guide per two persons, foods and drinks.  The tour guides were really kind and helpful, I would really recommend you guys to have MDPL Jogja team on board.

We made it to the hiking start line in Selo Village, Boyolali. It took around an hour or two from the city of Jogjakarta to this village. Selo Route is well-known to be the most friendly route to reach the summit of Merbabu. Though, I don’t really think so.

I completely almost lost my breath and I ruined my turban. No hidings, my look there was a complete mess of how exhausted I was that time even in the first hour of hiking. Thankfully I got my two best men, Raka and Joel who always had my back. They carried my super heavy bag until the first post and kept motivating me to keep going when honestly I was about to call it off.

Lesson Learned
Exercise before you hike! This is my biggest regret because I should have worked out at least 2 weeks or a week before hiking so my body would not get shocked like I had experienced. However it’s true of what people say, the true personality of a person would appear when they go hiking since mostly everyone there will get pressured and react naturally. I am really thankful for having such supportive friends like them!

Unfortunate Event 4: I Broke My Leather Gloves

I was freezing. Totally freezing. I brought my old leather gloves which I got around 3 years ago. My carelessness had brought me to the realization that I should have bought gloves for hiking than for fashion.

Lesson Learned
Recheck if your gloves are still alright to be used. Screw fashion, get what you need!

Unfortunate Event 5: My Flashlight Almost Ran Out of Batteries

Long story short of the exhausting yet adventurous trip, we arrived in Sabana 1 where we had a camp at. We built a tent and made ourselves warm there. At 2 AM, we had to get ready thus we could continue our hiking to the summit at 3 AM which we absolutely had no lights but the flashlights only. And I totally had a lack of research that cold temperature caused the quick decrease of batteries. I had already prepared 2 pair of batteries for my flashlight, but unfortunately they did not really last longer somehow. It ate a lot of powers thus I had to always stick with friends who luckily got longer batteries than mine.

Lesson Learned
Get a headlamp! Much easier and convenient.

Unfortunate Event 6: I Was Late to The Summit

I was expecting to reach the summit of this 3145 MASL Mountain when the sky was still dark thus I could savor the sunrise like I had in Bromo Mountain. However I am still grateful to finally be able to reach the summit though the sun already took a sneak peek behind the clouds before I had got there. I was too exhausted and I got a bit nausea while reaching the summit.

Unfortunate Event 7: I Could Have Left My Sleeping Bag At Camp

So basically the reason why I was late to the summit might be because I was too well-prepared for also bringing my sleeping bag with me in the bag though I actually could have just simply left them in the camp at tent.

Lesson Learned
Just listen and proactively ask! Even though you are sleepy and tired, stay sane and just think of the possible ways.

Unfortunate Event 8: I Slipped While Going Downhill

One fact I could share would be, I was the last hiker who reached the basecamp. The ground was very slippery and I had to be really careful until I got my toes bleeding inside the nails.

Lesson Learned
It’s a destiny.

There it was the eight of unfortunate events I had while hiking to Merbabu Mountain with JanSport Campus Ambassadors Batch 4 Indonesia. There were a lot of things I could be able to learn from this rare experience since I would have never been interested to go hiking if it was not for JanSport. Hehe! But no regrets after all, and I am so happy!

If you guys wanted to know the flow and the highlight of the trip, kindly stalk my Instagram (@pranichia) and get to know better about my experience in my “merbabu.” highlight. Thank you so much for bumping and reading my blogpost, hope you could learn something about it. Ciao!

Photos and video by Furamingo Creative. Thanks to Jimmy and Abraham for being such amazing documenters!


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Since yesterday’s blogpost sounded more personal, here is another blogpost written with love for you! I am going to talk about the outfit I wore for hiking in the pine forest as a shooting location I went to for the short documentary film ‘the words i hope you never have to hear’.

This semester break is totally a break free I have always needed. I am so excited that I finally went to pine forest near the mountain of Tangkuban Perahu, Bandung. It was exactly located a few miles from the mountain.

I went there with my friend as I once requested to go to a place where we can bring ourselves closer to nature. And here it is, a little hike to the pine forest.

We did not bring too many stuff since we did not want to make our bags heavy but one thing that we surely brought was indeed sweater whilst mine was the knitted one. Oh, and for intermezzo, actually that one picture above was once featured on Fossil’s Instagram Story since I wore Fossil watch and it was National Friendship Day. That was really exciting! I really love how Fossil treats everyone on social media, they are so lovely and kind.

I loved the ambience there, the temperature was pretty cold yet still acceptable. I loved how the sun flashing through the leaves and made lingering shadows on the ground. They were so lovely and it makes me want to go there again!

I enjoyed sleeping on the ground, and savoring the warmth of sunlight under the tall pine trees. The air was light and beautiful. I used my knitted sweater from Stradivarius as a pillow. I honestly had no idea what to wear for hiking since I was coming from Jakarta and did not really bring too many clothes which means, my outfits were totally limited and that was frustrating?!

But luckily, I decided to wear green army shirt from et cetera which I found from my wardrobe.

I wore blue ripped jeans from Stradivarius and super comfy shoes from Wakai. Umm, is it weird to wear Wakai for hiking since this shoes are more likely to be worn for malls but hey it was comfortable. Okay.

Honestly this is one of my favorite pictures in 2017. I never ever regret taking this picture because I feel like I totally nailed photography in Depth of Field (DoF) subject. Haha!

So that is how I spent my semester break so far. If you still remember my previous post in July Beatitude 2017 saying that there was a lot of things crossed in my minds about social judgement, misinterpretations and many other things, I honestly completely felt better after landing my feet in this place. It is true, they say, sometimes we just need to run away to nature for a day at least, just to clear up our minds. And it really worked. I am not being normative but this is true and it happened to me. Whatever happens, just bring yourself closer to nature. It may put your mind at ease. I hope this blogpost inspires you in every aspects, thank you so much for reading and have a great weekend!